Despite the fact that labels such as “smart industry” and “industry 4.0” (terms used to denote the fourth industrial revolution) have become popular topics within academia and in practice, their meaning remains an issue of concern. It’s a concern that has drawn the attention of various authors. It is a struggle we engaged in as well – specifically regarding the Dutch “smart industry” label – to aid our aim of assessing whether our call to combine forces can be extended beyond industry 4.0 and industrie 4.0. We provide here initial indications of whether there is more unity in meaning and, thus, reasons to take steps toward combining labels. By means of 20 interviews with Dutch smart industry experts, a representation of smart industry was obtained as understood in the Netherlands. Based on this representation, we examined the extent of overlap between the Dutch “smart industry” label and the general term “fourth industrial revolution” as well as the “industry 4.0” label as defined by various scholars. Our findings showed that smart industry in the Netherlands does not match the denotation of an industrial revolution. Several signals were, however, detected indicating that the content observed under the Dutch smart industry label overlaps with what is being presented under the label industry 4.0. These results reveal that there is indeed more unity in meaning between the various labels that exist and, as such, strengthens our call to combine forces.
The authors are very thankful to Isabel de Waard for her artwork with regard to Figure 2.
Habraken, M. and Bondarouk, T. (2019), "Smart Industry or Smart Bubbles? A Critical Analysis of Its Perceived Value", HRM 4.0 For Human-Centered Organizations (Advanced Series in Management, Vol. 23), Emerald Publishing Limited, pp. 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1877-636120190000023018Download as .RIS
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